When time shall set the captives free, Now scathed by wrath, Heirs of his immortality, Bright be their path.
The Blessed Union--Epigram.
Doubtless to some, with length of ears, To gratify an ape's desire, The blessed Union still endears;-- The stripes, if not the stars, be theirs! "Greek faith" they gave us eighty years, And then--"Greek fire!" But, better all their fires of scath Than one hour's trust in Yankee faith!
The Fire of Freedom.
The holy fire that nerved the Greek To make his stand at Marathon, Until the last red foeman's shriek Proclaimed that freedom's fight was won, Still lives unquenched--unquenchable: Through every age its fires will burn-- Lives in the hermit's lonely cell, And springs from every storied urn.
The hearthstone embers hold the spark Where fell oppression's foot hath trod; Through superstition's shadow dark It flashes to the living God! From Moscow's ashes springs the Russ; In Warsaw, Poland lives again: Schamyl, on frosty Caucasus, Strikes liberty's electric chain!
Tell's freedom-beacon lights the Swiss; Vainly the invader ever strives; He finds _Sic Semper Tyrannis_ In San Jacinto's bowie-knives! Than these--than all--a holier fire Now burns thy soul, Virginia's son! Strike then for wife, babe, gray-haired sire, Strike for the grave of Washington!
The Northern rabble arms for greed; The hireling parson goads the train-- In that foul crop from, bigot seed, Old "Praise God Barebones" howls again! We welcome them to "Southern lands," We welcome them to "Southern slaves," We welcome them "with bloody hands To hospitable Southern graves!"
Hymn to the National Flag.
By Mrs. M. J. Preston.
Float aloft, thou stainless banner! Azure cross and field of light; Be thy brilliant stars the symbol Of the pure and true and right. Shelter freedom's holy cause-- Liberty and sacred laws; Guard the youngest of the nations-- Keep her virgin honor bright.
From Virginia's storied border, Down to Tampa's furthest shore-- From the blue Atlantic's clashings To the Rio Grande's roar-- Over many a crimson plain, Where our martyred ones lie slain-- Fling abroad thy blessed shelter, Stream and mount and valley o'er.
In thy cross of heavenly azure Has our faith its emblem high; In thy field of white, the hallow'd Truth for which we'll dare and die; In thy red, the patriot blood-- Ah! the consecrated flood. Lift thyself, resistless banner! Ever fill our Southern sky!
Flash with living, lightning motion In the sight of all the brave! Tell the price at which we purchased Room and right for thee to wave Freely in our God's free air, Pure and proud and stainless fair, Banner of the youngest nation-- Banner we would die to save!
Strike Thou for us! King of armies! Grant us room in Thy broad world! Loosen all the despot's fetters, Back be all his legions hurled! Give us peace and liberty, Let the land we love be free-- Then, oh! bright and stainless banner! Never shall thy folds be furled!
Sonnet--Moral of Party
The moral of a party--if it be That healthy States need parties, lies in this, That we consider well what race it is, And what the germ that first has made it free. That germ must constitute the living tie That binds its generations to the end, Change measures if it need, or policy, But neither break the principle, nor bend. Each race hath its own nature--fixed, defined, By Heaven, and if its principle be won, Kept changeless as the progress of the sun, It mocks at storm and rage, at sea and wind, And grows to consummation, as the tree, Matured, that ever grew in culture free.
Our Faith in '61.
By A. J. Requier.
"That governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed: that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as TO THEM SHALL SEEM most likely to effect their safety and happiness."--[Declaration of Independence, July 4, '76.]
Not yet one hundred years have flown Since on this very spot, The subjects of a sovereign throne-- Liege-master of their lot-- This high degree sped o'er the sea, From council-board and tent, "No earthly power can rule the free But by their own consent!"
For this, they fought as Saxons fight, On bloody fields and long-- Themselves the champions of the right, And judges of the wrong; For this their stainless knighthood wore The branded rebel's name, Until the starry cross they bore Set all the skies aflame!